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Technological and Semiotic Code Structuresof Conspiracist Thinking Online. PI News from a Media-Related Point of View
The article examines the anti-Islamic blog website PI News from the point of view of media studies, with the aim of deciphering the importance of the website’s technological and semiotic code structures for the development of conspiracist thinking. First, the article claims that, although PI News presents itself as an alternative media website, it does not conform to classic definitions of alternative media.With the exception of the moderated comment section, the website does not allow the interactive participation of users. Second, the article points out that the code architecture of PI News triggers conspiracist thinking by primarily presenting mainstream media articles that are remediated on the website. A mosaic of conspiracist meaning, the article contends, is not only created by rhetorical structures but also by multimodal and structural enhancement, by hyperlinks that work as proofs and authentication, by user–generated content and feedback via comments, as well as by intermedial performativity in Social Media. The technosemiotic embedding of original news articles creates an underlying suspicion without providing a coherent model of explanation. The content of the website predisposes conspiracist thinking by presenting a corrective point of view to the mainstream media and by calling on the receiver to contribute a possible theoretical explanation or ‘enigma’.
pagine: 157-170
DOI: 10.4399/97888548993159
data pubblicazione: Giugno 2016
editore: Aracne